Strong earthquakes are common causes of destruction of ancient monuments, such as classical columns and colonnades. Ancient columns of great archaeological significance can be found in high seismicity areas in the Eastern Mediterranean. Understanding the behaviour and response of these historic structures during strong earthquakes is useful for the assessment of conservation and rehabilitation proposals for such structures. The seismic behaviour of ancient columns and colonnades involves complicated rocking and sliding phenomena that very rarely appear in modern structures. Analytical study of such multi-block structures under strong earthquake excitations is extremely complicated if not impossible. Computational methods can be used to simulate the dynamic behaviour and seismic response of these structures. The discrete element method (DEM) is utilized to investigate the response of ancient multi-drum columns and colonnades during harmonic and earthquake excitations by simulating the individual rock blocks as distinct rigid bodies.